Considering building a pool? Before you begin the process, expert pool builder C. Matthew Barash of Coastal Aquatic Creations in Los Angeles has some tips to guide you through the process.
It doesn’t matter where you live in the country or how much you are willing to spend, you still need to ask yourself these questions as you consider the proper pool for you and your family. Also, check out the impressive photo gallery above of Coastal Aquatic Creations’ pools for ideas on what you might want to do in your backyard.
1. Do you want to exercise or simply cool off?
An exercise pool will be larger than a “cooling off pool” because swimming laps requires a longer pool; however, today many people also do water aerobics and therapy for countless types of ailments that are more stand- or swim-in-place exercises, and these exercises do not require a long pool.
2. How much yard do you want to use for the pool?
There is really no standard ratio of pool-to-yard size. I like to place a pool at the back farthest point in a yard. When space is a limitation, then we have no choice where to place it. Typically, if we do have the space, I want to be at least 12 feet from the backdoor before reaching the waterline of the pool. However, there are some very interesting designs that provide for a pool right at the door and even pools that are partially indoors. There is really no rule of thumb.
3. What kind of architectural styles do you like? Do you prefer more modern or classic styles?
Modern pools differ from classic pools as modern pools are very simple, typically rectangular, with 90 degree corners, very linear and glass tiled. Classic pools may be free form, rectangular (with rounded corners) or in a shape (such as kidney shaped), very simple, but appear more “standard/normal/dated” and may remind us of our next door neighbors’ pool from the ’70s, but with a slightly updated appearance.
4. Is a clean line pool or a free-form pool more appropriate?
Clean line pools are rectangular; free-form pools can be any random squiggly shape. One should choose a shape based on their tastes and amount of space. Clean line pools in Los Angeles are more common to build today than free-form. I build 12 clean line pools to every free-form pool.
5. Are pool covers or other safety features important?
There are no downsides to pool covers other than the added costs to install and maintenance costs. Be aware that if they fail beyond the warranty period, repairs and replacement may be costly.
You can read more about pool safety on Matt’s website.
6. Are you prepared for the costs to operate a pool, such as heating and maintenance?
Typically, monthly pool service maintenance costs around $100 but is based on the pool size and ease of service. Solar pool heating is an option and quite popular. Always maintain the water chemistry, keep the pool clean, remove calcium buildup on the tile, and make sure the filters are clean, etc.
For more ideas for your home, check out our Pinterest board on outdoor living spaces!